Earlier this week, TSN's Rick Westhead released a bombshell of a report concerning an alleged sexual assault from the Pittsburgh Penguins' AHL coaching staff that is frankly shocking and disgusting.
Former Wilkes-Barre Scranton Penguins assistant coach Jarrod Skalde has filed a lawsuit against then WBS Penguins head coach Clark Donatelli for an alleged sexual assault on Jarrod's wife Erin Skalde while the three of them were together in a car during a road trip to Providence, R.I. earlier this year.
The details of the assault are, quite frankly, staggering.
From Westhead's column for TSN:
After the Skaldes and Donatelli had dinner together following a game on Nov. 11, 2018, and prepared to return to their hotel, the Skaldes allege in their claim that Donatelli sexually assaulted Erin when they were briefly alone, first putting his arm around her, calling her “sexy” and pulling her close to him.
“Mrs. Skalde tried to fight off his sexual advances and told him to stop, but to no avail, as Mr. Donatelli escalated his attack, including reaching his hands into Mrs. Skalde’s shirt and repeatedly touching her breasts,” the lawsuit alleges.
Skalde returned to his wife and Donatelli a few minutes later and they took a car-ride service back to the hotel. Donatelli insisted that he sit in the back seat with Erin for the ride, and that Skalde sit in the front
“Still in shock and uncertain what to do in response to her husband’s boss sexually assaulting her, Mrs. Skalde fearfully entered the back seat of the car, trying to put as much distance between herself and Mr. Donatelli as she could, to avoid him again sexually touching her,” the lawsuit says.
“Mr. Donatelli resumed his sexual assault and battery of Mrs. Skalde once he had her in the darkness of the backseat. He not only groped her breasts again, but also forced his hands down her pants and touched her vagina, despite her efforts to push him away… Only later did Mr. Skalde find out what happened to his wife that night, shaking him to the core to learn that he had sat unknowingly in the front seat as his boss has sexually assaulted his wife.”
As shocking as that all is, what's equally as bad is the fact that then Pittsburgh Penguins assistant GM and now Minnesota Wild GM Bill Guerin allegedly ignored Skalde and eventually fired him without cause.
Again from Westhead:
Skalde alleges that seven months later, when the incident was brought to the attention of Penguins’ assistant general manager Bill Guerin, whose duties included overseeing the NHL team’s AHL operation, Guerin told Skalde to keep quiet about the alleged assault. He alleges the NHL team has violated Pennsylvania’s whistleblower laws and fired him on May 5, 2020, because he complained to the team.
Now though, Guerin is speaking out and clearing the air. In a statement released through the Minnesota Wild, Guerin "emphatically denies" any wrongdoing and claims that as soon as he heard about the allegations he took action.
Check it out:
"The Minnesota Wild has discussed this matter with Bill Guerin and fully supports him," reads the statement. "As this is a matter of active litigation, we will have no further comment."
"When I learned of these allegations, I promptly brought them to Pittsburgh Penguins' senior management," said Guerin. "The allegations were quickly investigated. I emphatically deny anything to the contrary."
I do have to say, at the risk of blaming the victim, why did it take 7 months for the Skalde's to come forward? Within seven days of coming to Guerin with the allegations, Donatelli was out of a job and the Penguins had launched an investigation.
There's clearly more to this story than meets the eye.
For the full story from Westhead, click below: